I’ve been going to music festivals for years now, and have had the opportunity to work on North America’s largest dance music festival – Electric Daisy Carnival, Las Vegas. Even though I’ve been to over 10 different festivals over the last several years, I’ve never been camping. This year that changed. I embarked on a five-day journey to Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival with two of my KDC coworkers, Shaina and Brigitte.
Luckily, Shaina is a Coachella veteran and knew exactly what we would need while camping for four nights in the middle of the desert. When she first sent us over the list of what we would need, I thought she was crazy. All this stuff for just four nights? Well, she was right. We needed all of it. Here’s what I learned:
- If you’re traveling with a big group, make sure you get to the camp site early to get spots together.
We were traveling with a big group of people and getting camping spots next to each other was definitely a process. First, we met up with everyone at the Walmart close by and got into a line to drive to the camping entrance. Driving in a 25-car line across Indio without losing everyone was definitely a struggle. Keeping next to each other while waiting in the security check line was even more difficult. Even though we got there an hour before gates opened, there was a huge line of cars ahead of us filled with people who had the same idea.
Luckily, they had a waiting lot where we were all able to meet before heading into the main camping lot. Plus, everyone else there was doing the same exact thing as us, and were really nice about letting us stay together.
- Even though you are in the middle of the desert, it gets really cold at night.
Temperatures during the day reached a scolding 100 degrees by the end of the weekend, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t get cold at night. We would be wearing leggings, sweatpants and a sweatshirt all wrapped up in a blanket and would still be cold. You definitely need to bring lots of layers to survive those brutal nights.
- Everyone at Coachella takes camping very seriously.
Camping in comfort is key for Coachella. Walking around the camp sites, I saw people with propane grills cooking up some lunch, couches for a cozy living space and even a ceiling fan attached to an E-Z Up to keep away the brutal heat of mid-day.
- Waking up early to shower is a must.
You’re going to wake up early with the sun anyway, so you might as well get yourself out of bed to get in line for the showers. Lines can get really long, especially the later it becomes in the morning. To save yourself from having to wait an hour or longer, it’s definitely important to get yourself out of bed and into that line.
- The party doesn’t stop after the last set ends.
Just because the last set ended for the night, doesn’t mean the party is over. On the camp grounds there’s a silent disco that goes late into the night. Plus, a fellow camper brought his DJ equipment and played throughout the night, creating an epic dance party within the campgrounds. Don’t worry though, if you want to go to sleep right after the festival, you’ll be so exhausted from the epic day that even his DJ set won’t keep you from some shut-eye.
All-in-all camping was an awesome experience that I’ll never forget. Though, next time I definitely think I’ll forgo the camping and get an AirBnb.
Submitted by: Lea Komitzky